As the Senate leaves town for August district work period, I wanted to provide a quick update on where things are with the patient matching issue in Congress and to ask for your assistance. As you may recall in June the House adopted an amendment that would strike language in the FY20 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education (Labor-HHS) Appropriations bill that prohibits the US Department of Health and Human Services from using federal funds to promulgate or adopt a unique patient identifier.

Striking this language will provide the US Department of Health and Human Services the ability to evaluate a full range of patient matching solutions and enable it to work with the private sector to identify a solution that is cost-effective, scalable, secure and one that protects patient privacy. Now that a budget deal has materialized, when the Senate returns in September, we expect them to quickly take up the Senate FY20 Labor-HHS appropriations bill. We are trying to build grassroots support for the Senate to reject inclusion of this outdated language as the House did in June.

Along these lines, we’ve created a new engagement at AHIMA’s Advocacy Action Center and we have two favors to ask— 

  • Head to the Advocacy Action Center to contact your US Senator about this critical issue. 
  • Encourage others to take action as well. 

Our goal between now and September is to garner as much grassroots support as possible to continue to move this issue forward. 

Please let us know if you have any questions.

Thanks for your support of HIM!!